6 Tips for Safe Holiday Shopping

Just because we’ve spent tons of time on the internet over the years doesn’t mean we’ve seen it all. It also definitely doesn’t mean we’re not all still susceptible to some schemes and scams that are going to be rearing their ugly heads all over the web this holiday season.

So, here are 6 quick tips to help keep you (and your bank account) safe online:

  1. Getting SPAM in your inbox is usually easy to detect, but now it can come over text, too. Don’t be fooled. And don’t click on a link. Check out the retailer’s website to confirm the deal.
  2. Make sure the site you’re buying from is prominently displaying a location address and a legit phone number. They should post their shipping and return policy as well.
  3. Stick to using your credit card. You have more options around fraudulent charges than you would using your debit card. If you’re not a fan of the high-interest rates that come with that, pre-load a card to do your online shopping instead.
  4. If you’re using a specialty site of some kind, avoid creating an account with them if you’re just doing a one-time purchase. This will keep as much of your personal information out of their hands as possible in case they are, in fact, internet grifters.
  5. It might seem convenient to make a purchase while you’re sipping a Latte at a coffee shop, but be sure you’re always using a secure network when you buy online. Use your home WiFi or even your mobile phone as a hotspot to keep your buying secure.
  6. Two-factor authentication (2FA) might seem like internet slang that’s over your head, but it’s time to get onboard, if you’re not already. 2FA keeps your login safe by not allowing you in with just a password, but by sending you an authentication code to type in as well. Never worry about password theft again.

A bit of cynicism related to your online purchases could go a long way this month in keeping your bank account and personal information safe, so keep these 6 tips in mind.